Course Content
Orientation, introduction to the course
1. Human-Robot Interaction (HRI)
2. Research Methods in Human-Robot Interaction
3. Smart Cities & HRI
The demand for city living is already high, and it appears that this trend will continue. According to the United Nations World Cities Report, by 2050, more than 70% of the world's population will be living and working in cities — one of many reports predicting that cities will play an important role in our future (UN-Habitat, 2022). Thus, as cities are growing in size and scope, it is shaped into complex urban landscape where things, data, and people interact with each other. Everything and everyone has become so connected that Wifi too often fails to meet digital needs, online orders don't arrive fast enough, traffic jams still clog the roads and environmental pollution still weighs on cities. New technologies, technical intelligence, and robots can contribute to the direction of finding solutions to ever-increasing problems and assist the evolution of the growing urban space.
Human-Robot Interaction
About Lesson

Robots for learning

Social robots have been proven to be highly effective in facilitating learning and education. aHowever, it is important to note that social robots are not solely used as educational tools to teach specific subjects such as mathematics or programming, like Lego Mindstorms. Robots can serve various roles in the learning process, such as a teacher, tutor, peer, or even a sidekick to the teacher. The role of a tutor is preferred by both teachers and students, as it supports the teacher’s teaching and provides a personalized tutoring experience for the student. On the other hand, peer-like robots are used to take a learning journey with the learner, adapting their performance to match the student’s knowledge level. Teachable agent robots are also used as care-receiving robots, where the student teaches the robot, which can boost the learner’s confidence and lead to mastery of the subject. Social robots can also be used as sidekicks to teachers, making lessons more entertaining and capturing student interest.

Research has shown that tutoring has a strong impact on learning, and one-to-one tutoring can lead to significant improvement compared to group learning. Social robots capitalize on this by offering personalized tutoring experiences that are both social and physical. Studies have shown that social robots offer a distinct advantage over computer-based tutoring programs, which may be due to the robot’s social and physical presence, leading to a richer and more embodied learning experience. However, the socially interactive behaviours of robots can backfire in learning contexts, causing students to engage with the robot socially rather than focusing on learning goals. Therefore, human-robot interaction (HRI) research is necessary to guide the development of robots that can effectively support learning.


An example of a robot lecturer in Germany:

A Finland school incorporates robots as teachers:

Robots as teaching assistants in south Korean nursery schools:


Bartneck, C. et al. (2020) Human-Robot Interaction: An Introduction. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. Available at: